Federal Law and Online Gambling
There are multiple constitutional issues involved in the enforcement of federal laws against online gambling. First, the Commerce Clause, which protects commercial activities, and the Due Process Clause, which protects freedom of speech, have both been challenged in court. However, these attacks have met with limited success. Commerce Clause doubts seem to be satisfied by the commercial nature of the gambling business, and free speech objections have been weakened by limited First Amendment protections for crimes facilitating speech. Finally, the Due Process Clause arguments have largely been defeated by the fact that they involve financial transactions within the United States.
While online gambling has numerous legal defenses, federal law has also been used to counteract state laws. According to 31 U.S.C. 5362(10), it is unlawful to engage in Internet gambling unless the activity is conducted exclusively in a state. In this way, state gambling laws will remain intact and be strengthened.